Psychotherapists in independent practice: Some findings and issues

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Date of Original Version



Notes that although professional psychologists' involvement in private sector health care delivery has grown at an unparalleled rate in the past decade, little is known about professional psychologists' composition, practices, or their views. This article describes the professional characteristics, clinical activities, theoretical perspectives, and training and career satisfaction of 210 doctoral-level psychotherapists (mean age 47.2 yrs) employed full-time in independent practice. More than 30 personal and professional variables were used to compare these private practitioners with 72 psychotherapists employed in the public sector. Results indicate that independent practitioners were significantly more likely to be older and more experienced, work fewer hours, do more marital therapy, and be more satisfied with psychotherapy as a career than their colleagues in institutional clinical settings. Contrary to expectations, there were no differences between the 2 groups in theoretical orientations or percentage of women. Several issues surrounding private practice are explored, and the sociopolitical and training implications of increasing numbers of psychotherapists entering independent practice are discussed. (46 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved). © 1983 American Psychological Association.

Publication Title, e.g., Journal

Professional Psychology: Research and Practice